El Salvador has embraced Bitcoin like no other country, with the government buying hundreds of coins last year when it announced the cryptocurrency would become legal tender.
But as the cryptocurrency market cools, El Salvador’s investment is rapidly losing value — amounting to at least $50 million.
Since September 2021, the government of El Salvador led by President Nayib Bukele has accumulated 2,301 bitcoins worth $103 million. Now they are worth about $51 million.
The broader crypto market, which grew rapidly during the pandemic, has collapsed in recent months. On Monday, Bitcoin’s value fell below $24,000, its lowest level since December 2020.
Nevertheless, Bukele suggested on Tuesday that his enthusiasm for the cryptocurrency had not diminished.
In response to a reported comment by El Salvador’s finance minister that the decline represented only a small percentage of their national budget, Bukele tweeted“You’re telling me we should buy more #BTC?”